What made Dolly Parton famous

Dolly Parton turns 75: this is how she has changed over the course of her career

Her trademarks are the blonde hair, the bright voice and the broad southern accent. But Dolly Parton is much more than a country music icon. She became a legend through numerous film and TV appearances. Your career in pictures.

For decades, Dolly Parton has been creating new hits, collecting prizes and honors and being as natural as possible. The musician celebrates her 75th birthday this Tuesday and doesn't seem a bit tired.

"I don't think about my life in numbers," she revealed to US talk show host Oprah Winfrey just before Christmas. "For one thing, I don't get old because I don't have the time. I can't hold still long enough to get old," she said. "And I'll just do my best, whatever age I am."

Dolly Rebecca Parton was born on January 19, 1946 on the banks of the Little Pigeon River in Pittman Center, Tennessee, in a small wooden hut. The parents and their twelve children in total lived in poverty. In the hard everyday life of the farmer family, evenings with music and singing in church were the only pleasant changes. Her later hits "Coat Of Many Colors" or "In The Good Old Days" are musical reviews of the time in poverty.

The big breakthrough followed in the seventies

Parton showed her talent as a little girl and appeared on local television and radio shows when she was ten. The teenager Dolly sang on the show "Grand Ole Opry" at the age of 13, which opened the door to budding stars. It was there that she first met Johnny Cash, who advised her to simply follow instincts in her career.

No sooner said than done - the day after graduating from high school in 1964, Parton moved to Nashville and began a life as a songwriter and musician. Her first single only made it to number 24 on the country charts in 1967. But the title should haunt her for a lifetime: "Dumb Blonde" (Eng .: stupid blonde). "Somehow that sums me up, but: Just because I'm blonde, I'm not everyone's stupid. Just don't think I'm stupid," she says, looking back.

And she is absolutely right. She became a successful musician, a star, appeared in films, got rich and blossomed into a businesswoman with a heart for people from less good backgrounds. In our photo show you can see how the cult blonde has changed over the past few decades.

Whitney Houston made Parton's song a world hit

Their first album in 1967 was entitled "Hello, I'm Dolly". "Hello Dolly was really big on Broadway back then, so this title was natural," recalls the outstanding musician, who is supposed to be able to play up to 13 instruments. Her hits also include "I Will Always Love You" from her own pen, a song that later also brought Whitney Houston great success.

And of course the song "Jolene", with which she saved her husband from going astray with a bank employee. "Somehow he was in the bank quite often to talk to the long-legged, pretty redhead about a loan," recalls Parton. But they didn't need a loan, "that's why I once told him at the bank to move his ass home."

This was the only known mark on the family history because, unlike many other stars, Dolly Parton and her husband Carl Thomas Dean had made a life and a marriage without scandals since May 1966. The contractor and Parton remained childless. But her siblings provided plenty of offspring, who were spoiled by "Aunt Granny" (Aunt Granny).

"Playboy" shoot without naked photos

Parton's life would not be complete without looking back at her appearance on "Playboy". Millions of men were disappointed in October 1978 when the photo of the singer in a bunny outfit on the cover of men's magazine was only followed by an inside interview - she always refused offers for nude photos.

To do this, she often went under the knife to enlarge her bust size. This was so noticeable that some bridges in the United States became popularly known as "Dolly Parton Bridges" because of the curved arches. But this was part of the blonde's image that she maintains to this day. "I need a lot of money to look this cheap," she likes to say. This does not detract from the reputation.

Her reputation rises even higher when Parton shows her big heart. Their reading program for children, known as "Dolly Parton's Imagination Library", gives hundreds of thousands of children one book each month from birth to kindergarten. In addition there is her "Dollywood Foundation", in which her entire financial empire is summarized, with which she supports financially weak regions in the south of the USA and creates new jobs there.

Million donation for the development of a corona vaccine

An entire region in Tennessee is thriving because the Dollywood amusement park is located around the town of Pigeon Forge. Until the outbreak of the pandemic, it attracted millions of visitors annually. Parton also had an answer to Corona: with a million donation, she supported the Moderna company in the development of a vaccine against the corona virus last year.

The list of honors that have accumulated over the course of one's career is long. From the Country Music Hall of Fame to the Grammy Hall of Fame, countless gold or platinum records lead to honorary doctorates. Then there is the National Medal of the Arts, the US government's highest award for artists. And of course a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1984 should not be missing - a second star followed in 2018 for the joint work with Linda Ronstadt and Emmilou Harris as a trio. The most unusual thing on the list is the name of a species of lichen that grows in the Appalachian Mountains: "Japewiella dollypartoniana".

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